U.S. flight schools still not screening foreign nationals, could be training jihad terrorists


Flight schools must not provide “flight training to a foreign student unless the Secretary of Homeland Security first determines that the student does not pose a threat to aviation or national security.” But actually to do this checking would be “Islamophobic.” And anyway, what could go wrong?

“9/11 Flashback: US Flight Schools Still Unknowingly Training Terrorists?,” by Lee Ferran and Jason Ryan for ABC News, July 18 (thanks to Kenneth):

More than a decade after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 Americans, some foreign flight students are still not subject to terror database screening until after they’ve completed pilot training, according to a new report from the government’s watchdog.

“Thus, foreign nationals obtaining flight training with the intent to do harm, such as three of the pilots and leaders of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, could have already obtained the training needed to operate an aircraft before they received any type of vetting,” says report, published today by the Government Accountability Office….

After the attacks, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) established the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP), which is designed to prevent flight schools regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration from “providing flight training to a foreign student unless the Secretary of Homeland Security first determines that the student does not pose a threat to aviation or national security.”

But the new GAO report says that the AFSP database is woefully behind and some of the more than 25,000 foreign nationals who were in the FAA airmen registry were not found in the AFSP database, “indicating that these individuals had not applied to the AFSP or been vetted by the TSA before taking flight training and receiving an FAA airman certificate.”…

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